What Not to Do When Evicting a Tenant

Evicting a Tenant can be the most expensive, frustrating and time consuming process that landlords face. One of the most common reasons for evicting a tenant is their failure to pay rent and or damaging the rental property. It can be extremely disheartening to have someone who is literally costing you money continue to benefit from living on your property. Unfortunately the legal tenant and property management system in most states is arduous, leans in the favor of the tenant and makes it illegal for landlords to take the eviction process into their own hands. Below is a list of common eviction mistakes that landlords make that can cost them in the long run.

  • Never change the locks to your property with the intent of locking out a tenant. According to NOLO, landlords that lock their tenants out can potentially face lawsuits for trespassing, intentionally inflicting emotional distress and wrongful eviction. In addition, tenants can potentially sue landlords for monetary losses including cost of temporary housing and even for the cost of that month’s rent.

  • Never freeze out your tenants by shutting off essential utilities. Like in the case of changing the locks to your rental, if you freeze out tenants they can sue you and collect payments for things like the cost of a heater or lost rent.

  • Never move your tenant’s items out of the rental or into the garbage.

  • Never threaten a tenant with violence, an official looking letter or even a comment that could be construed as threatening.

  • Never refuse to make repairs that may affect the ability to live in the rental.

Doing any of these things can cost a landlord heavy fines and legal fees. The most important thing when doing an eviction is to go through the legal process. Make sure you are documenting the reasons why you are evicting the tenant in your property management system and track all substantial interactions you have with the tenants in order to protect yourself from a wrongful eviction lawsuit. Effective lease management software like RISSOFT’s property management software system should enable a landlord to track and document eviction related issues in a document management portal so they are easy to retrieve when starting the legal eviction process. Don’t let evictions cost you money time and money by trying to complete them outside the law.

This post is provided by RISSOFT Residential and Commercial Property Management Software, specializing in innovative and cutting-edge property management software for all 50 states. Request a demo or contact us today to receive more information.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this post in not intended to be construed as legal advice, nor should it be considered a substitute for obtaining individual legal counsel or consulting your local, state, federal or provincial tenancy laws.